Did you know that improved health not only makes you feel better and live longer, but also increases your effectiveness in working life? If you feel that you’re too busy to look after your health, then you’re making a mistake. Increased fitness can help you get through work faster, with no fall in the quality of your output, leaving you with more time and energy for the things that mean the most to you in life.
Eat a healthy diet
Getting a good balance of different nutrients in your diet isn’t just a tick-box exercise – it really will make you feel better. The easiest way to achieve it is by eating a variety of fruits and vegetables every day. You’ll find it easier to focus at work, even over long shifts, if you cut out refined sugars (including sugary drinks) and eat more food containing long-chain carbohydrates such as breakfast cereals, rice, bread and wholegrain pasta.
Get enough sleep
Whether you’re on your feet all day, or you have to stay focused in long meetings, getting enough sleep is vital, so shop for an adjustable neck pillow to help you get the support you need for really good rest. Over one in four Americans struggle to sleep sometimes, but getting your bedroom to the right temperature, making sure that it’s well aired, and investing in breathable low-friction bedding can really help.
You’ll sleep better and digest your food better if you stay well hydrated. Ideally, you should be drinking at least half a gallon of water a day – coffee, tea and alcohol don’t count because they flush fluid through your body more quickly. Spreading out your fluid consumption through the day makes it more effective, so if you possibly can, have a glass of water beside you when you’re working.
The World Health Organization recommends exercising for at least two and a half hours a week. This can include gentle exercise such as walking, cycling or swimming, but at least 75 minutes should be spent on vigorous exercise that speeds up your heart. You should also work on stretching your body to maintain a healthy degree of flexibility, and include some strength-training exercises – anything from weightlifting to squats. This approach will increase your energy levels and reduce common problems such as back pain.
Nurture your relationships
Time spent with friends and family is never time wasted. Studies show that it reduces your risk of developing chronic stress or mental illness, improving your concentration and mental agility. It has also been linked to improved physical health, so don’t let your boss tell you that you should always put work first – the quality of your work will be higher when you have healthy relationships.
Paying attention to these fundamental health needs will help you in every area of your life. When you’re feeling happier, more alert and more energetic, your performance at work will improve as a direct result.